Face to Face

Sun rays

Revelation 22:4-5 “They will see his face, and his name will be on their foreheads. There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light. And they will reign for ever and ever.”

Do you remember how Moses once asked to see God’s face, and God told him “…no man may see me and live”? Do you remember how practically everyone who saw God or his angels in visions was terrified? The great gulf between his holiness and our sinfulness is why the relationship must be carried on by faith rather than sight at this time. It is almost like a long distance relationship between two pen pals. They write, but never see each other. That is how we relate to God, at least on our part. He has written to us in his word. We never see him. The words that connect us lead us to care about each other deeply. But now, there is always that distance, at least for us who cannot see him.

One of the many blessings of living at home with God is the end of that distance. He will live life with us, and we will see him face to face. Writing is great when you can’t see the one you love. I once lived for the next letter from my wife to appear in my mailbox. Hearing a live voice over the phone is even better. But only being together, in the same place, where you can see or touch, as well as read or hear, makes the relationship complete. Only seeing each other face to face allows you to connect and communicate in the way you long to do. That is waiting for us in God’s home, and it may be the very greatest blessing of them all.

Since God and the Lamb will live life with us face to face, we will forever live in their light. “There will be no more night. They will not need the light of a lamp or the light of the sun, for the Lord God will give them light.” What will it be like to live in such unending light? Will we sleep in heaven, but sleep in spite of the persistent light? It is also described as a place of perfect rest. You certainly can’t ask God to turn it down. That light is part of who he is.

Will we be so changed that sleep itself is no longer necessary? One thing is certain: no multicolored sunrise or sunset, no glorious view of the sun’s rays shining through a hole in the clouds, no warm glow of a fire, no dazzling display of fireworks, no light we can conceive of here will be as beautiful to see, or warming to soak in, as the light that shines from God’s face when he lives life with his people.

You have heard the saying, “A man’s home is his castle.” In our own home, each one of us rules. Ironically, in God’s home, each of us rules as well. “They will reign forever and ever.” When you look at the life God gives in his presence, ruling is an apt description of how we live. We will live like kings, in the presence of the King, because we are home with God, and live with him face to face.

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